Must Visit: World-Famous San Diego Zoo

The San Diego Zoo is famous worldwide and for good reasons. If you need any convincing to visit this innovative, first-class zoo, read on.


If you can’t get enough of these amazing animals, you have both the San Diego Zoo (located by Balboa Park) and the San Diego Zoo Safari Park to explore. While the original zoo is close to downtown, the Safari Park has incredible views, thanks to its asian savannah and african plains exhibits in which animals can roam freely, as well as a variety of “safari” experiences on offer including zipline and ropes courses that take you through animal enclosures.


You’re feet are tired out after a long day of roaming with the city. We get it! The San Diego Zoo has a myriad of ways to get around the zoo that are as much fun as they are relaxing. You can either hop on and off the Kangaroo Bus around the zoo or catch a double-decker bus for a full 35-minute tour. Jokes pepper the tours as you wind through animal enclosures while the skyfari lets you soar high over the animals as it takes you across the zoo and doubles for a gorgeous view of Balboa Park and the rest of the city.


Baby animals are a winner, no matter what. Seeing the cute little bundles of joy are one of the best parts of visiting a zoo. Their presence is a lot more noteworthy than you may realize. You can usually judge a zoo’s quality by how many young animals are running around. No animal is going to be in the mood for baby-making if they’re unhappy or unhealthy. So, the sheer number of young animals at the San Diego Zoo is an excellent marker for how well they take care of their animals.


Zoos are a hot-button topic these days. But you’ll be hard-pressed to find a zoo in the world more dedicated to the conservation of animal species and the planet. You’ll see reminders to recycle trash and conserve water all over the parks, including easy tips on how to incorporate these actions at home.

The Safari Park is home to the Institute for Conservation Research and the Frozen Zoo®, a collection of frozen cell cultures for over 1,000 animals both living and extinct. The zoo is leading conservation of the Northern White Rhino, of which only two remain on earth, and helped bring the California Condor back from the brink of extinction when only 22 birds were left in the wild. Your ticket sales will help keep these initiatives running.


No matter what mood you’re in, you’ll find a dining experience to match at the San Diego Zoo. If you’re looking for a beverage whether that’s a craft beer from Zoo Brew or fresh or a hot coffee at Jungle Java, there are convenient options located all over the park.

Want to support the conservation cause? The Sabertooth Grill uses produce from local farms and has created sustainable, environmentally-conscious entrees to keep you going through the day.

Finally, the zoo has the famous Albert’s, a restaurant in a treehouse, for full-service fine dining. A private waterfall creates a relaxing and romantic atmosphere for whatever you may be celebrating. This experience should be at the top of your bucket list.


Wild animals are an incredible part of our planet, and we can find inspiration from their cousins in zoos. The stripes on an okapi may inspire a painting. Watching the river otters slide down their network of waterfalls may inspire a new surf move you want to try out with San Diego Surf School teachers. Perhaps, most importantly, by learning about and engaging with new species, your appreciation for the planet’s diverse animal life will inspire you to take responsibility and move into action to help save our planet.